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EXTRACT: The Liminal: Notes on life, race and Direct Provision in Ireland

By December 11, 2021No Comments



Our extract this week is from The Liminal: Notes on life, race and Direct Provision in Ireland


We can’t wait for a new dawn when the Othering of us as asylum seekers will stop

Memories of that day still linger and they forever will.

Leaving without saying goodbye to my three-year-old son. The guilt of not knowing if he will be taken good care of. Leaving everything behind with just a bag of clothes was the worst time of my life. I was on a journey of no fixed end. I didn’t know where I was going, all l knew was l had to run for my safety. I had sleepless nights, not knowing if l would reunite with my family again. The stress of not knowing if they were all safe because I couldn’t communicate with them.

I was on my own, no one to talk to, no one to walk this painful journey with. I feared being sent back from where I was coming from. I had to be resilient and soldier on even though it was very hard. My life in Direct Provision has been very challenging. Moving from point A to B within a short space of time and just when you think you have settled. I have gone from sharing a room with two other girls from different backgrounds, to sharing a single room as a family of five with a teenage boy and girl. Life has never been the same again.

I feel my kids have lost that sense of security and reliance in me as l have become a child myself. I ask for everything and can’t provide for them, contrary to how it used to be back home. My kids are always the newest kid in class as we get moved often, which has paralysed their self confidence. They are drowning in this system and the stigma they get because of staying in DP.

It’s the simple things that make them feel different from others. They can’t carry proper lunch to school because the centre shop has no provision for that. They walk a distance to school while other kids pass them on the road and it’s raining. All these things have affected their confidence. They can’t be kids because they can feel this is not their home. This system has stripped us of the last shreds of dignity we had. We are mentally and psychologically drained.

We can’t wait for a new dawn when the Othering of us as asylum seekers will stop. When we can be treated the same as everyone else. When we can make use of the education we have. We have a lot to offer, if only we could be given a chance and platform to showcase how talented we are. My hope is to have a place I call home, to feel safe and live in peace.

I hope to be treated fairly and not to be always looked at as the Other person or the asylum seeker. I hope to be given an opportunity to showcase my expertise and prove that I am not here to be a burden of the state but to contribute positively and be a law abiding citizen. I hope my kids’ confidence can be rebuilt in future and they live a normal life which empowers them to be who they are and be proud of themselves.

The Liminal is available now
from Books Upstairs,
Marrowbone Books and
Marlowe & Co.